We hope you have had a Happy Easter and Happy Passover.
Last Thursday we held the first ever citywide math competition
at the BTU. It was a great success, though the number of students was a bit overwhelming. We will be better organized next year. Once again thanks to all who helped out and thanks to the BTU membership for sponsoring. Read more about the event
. See the list of top middle schools and the top students below.
If your were the teacher in charge of your team and you did not pick up either certificates or ribbons, or if you did not leave a commemorative t-shirt order, please email here
promptly and tell us what you need. Thank you.
special BTU T-shirts
will be available for pick up and purchase at the BTU Membership meeting on Wednesday, April 11. To date we have sold in excess of 4,700 t-shirts. We ask all members to wear their t-shirts as a show of solidarity each Friday going forward.
Open Posting and Transfer List Update
: As of Monday, April 9, the HR office is predicting that the transfer and open posting lists will be out no sooner than April 18. Please email Caren
The Group Insurance Open Enrollment
period runs from April 4 through May 9. During this period one can change plans at any time at City Hall, 8th floor, or by attending one of the seminars. The first seminar will be held at the BTU on April 10 from 4-6 PM. There will also be seminars at Florian Hall on April 18 from 11 AM to 2 PM and on April 26 at 1010 Mass Ave from from 10 AM to 12 PM. If you have any questions, please call the city's main office at 617-635-4570
STAND Hearing Today!
HEARING ON THE PROPOSED EDUCATION BALLOT INITIATIVE IS SCHEDULED!!
The Joint Education Committee of the Massachusetts Legislature is scheduled to hold an important hearing on the ballot initiative!
Joint Education Committee Hearing
Date: Today, Tuesday, April 10
Time: 11 AM - 4 PM
Where: Massachusetts State House
24 Beacon Street (enter on Beacon Street)
Hearing Room B1
Although the hearing begins at 11 AM, these hearings usually continue throughout the day. I know many of you are in the classroom on Tuesday during the day and will not be able to attend the hearing. Your being informed about Tuesday's hearing, however, is important. (In the event you're planning to attend the hearing, please take a personal day. My cell phone number is 617-615-7655; feel free to call me if you're thinking of heading in after school to double check the status of the hearing at that time.)
WE ARE COLLECTIVELY MAKING PROGRESS & ARE OUR STUDENTS' STRONGEST ADVOCATES!
TELL Mass Survey Deadline Extended
The TELL Mass Survey is a statewide feedback instrument encouraged under RTTT. Many school districts are actively promoting participation. Boston is not. The Boston participation rate is abysmally low. The Boston District, according to sources within our schools who have knowledge, is not actively encouraging participation for one of two reasons -- either the district is afraid that its own school climate survey will be diminished in importance as a result of the TELL Mass Survey, or it is afraid of the actual responses to the TELL Mass Survey. Hard to tell. Either way we lose, as the data that will be generated is important. And the data will in no way diminish the quality of the district's own climate survey. It will complement it. All we do know is that the school district has not been forthcoming in releasing the codes necessary for staff to participate.
Here's more information from the AFTMA Web Page
If you have received a survey code through your school building, make sure to take a few moments to go online and complete the survey.
If you haven't received a code, ask your principal or union building representative about how to obtain one. An individual can also contact the TELL Mass Help Desk to request either one code or multiple codes for colleagues in the same school building.
The Help Desk is open 7:30 AM to 4:30 PM Monday to Friday during the survey window. You can contact them by email email@example.com or by phone at 1-888-601-5826.
If you call the Help Desk to request multiple codes, you will be asked to provide your school name (to determine which codes to receive) and an email address to which the codes will be sent. You will not have to give your name.
The Help Desk will likely remind you of who should be completing the survey (only licensed, school-based educators), and that the codes should be disseminated to colleagues in the same building who have not completed the survey already.
Most questions about the survey can be answered by the Help Desk or by visiting the TELL Mass website. Thank you for your participation in this important initiative. And make sure that your voice is heard!
This is a lot of work for someone to do. It would be a lot easier if the school district would just willingly release the codes.
RTC Corner: Please Hand in Petitions at April 11 Membership Meeting. Thank you!
Reminder: Please return the COLA petitions at the next Membership Meeting on April 11 or mail them to the BTU/RTC Legislative Committee. Thanks for your help in collecting signatures.
Middle School Math Competition Winners Announced: CONGRATULATIONS ALL!
Middle School Top Schools and Individuals in last week's citywide competition:
- Boston Latin
|Some of the approximately 800 students who participated|
- Joyce Kilmer
- Jonathan Zou, Jessica Hayah, Kevin Zhang (all from BLS)
- Hayden Codigan (Curley)
- Benjamin Saint-Fort (O'Bryant), William Ahearn (Warren Prescott)
- Duy Nguyen (Murphy), James Monday (Murphy)
- Claire Craddock (Deve-McCormack)
High School lists to follow soon.
BTU Community Advisory Board MeetingJoin other educators, parents, students and community members at our second BTU CAB meeting on Monday, April 30 from 5:30 to 7:30 PM., at the BTU. We will continue to build relationships among CAB members, review our statement of purpose, discuss and learn more about the current political and educational climate, and continue our visioning and work on future collaborations. Light dinner is provided. Please rsvp.
Register Now for the Second Annual Boston Area Educators for Social Justice Conference!Registration is now open for the Second Annual Boston-area Educators for Social Justice Conference on Saturday, May 19. The conference is produced by Teacher Activist Group Boston and will be held at the Curley School in Jamaica Plain. Over the next few weeks, we will be updating our website with details about the conference schedule and keynote speakers, but we promise you that we've got some fantastic workshops and panels planned. We are also still accepting workshop proposals. The conference will take place on Saturday, May 19 at The Curley School in Jamaica Plain from 9 AM to 5 PM. For more info, visit the conference registration website.
See all upcoming events on the BTU website.
Save the DATE!
|Save the date: June 9 is comedy night at the BTU to benefit the BTU school. More information to come.|
Reminder: TEACH the Documentary
|REMINDER, TEACH DOCUMENTARY BEING SCREENED AT THE BOSTON INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL! Please Join Us and be part of a strong contingent at this Very Important HAPPENING Event on Monday, Patriots Day, 12:45 PM, April 16, 2012. See here.|
Opportunities for Educators & Their Students
Calderwood Fellowship in Writing Instruction At UMass BostonIn partnership with UMASS/Boston, this summer the Calderwood Writing Initiative will offer the Third Annual Calderwood Fellowship in Writing Instruction. The two-part graduate-level course is open to teachers of all grade levels, in all subject areas -- from public, parochial and independent schools - who display a strong desire to explore methods of writing instruction. Each participant will receive a $1,000 stipend and six graduate credits (tuition paid for by the Calderwood Writing Initiative) upon successful completion of both halves of the year-long program.
APPLICATIONS: To apply for this program, please send a resume with your contact information, current school name, teaching area and grade-level information to: Jenny Desai, Director, Calderwood Writing Initiative. Applicants should also include one expository writing sample of no more than five pages, and an essay response to the following question about your writing pedagogy: What have you noticed about your students' writing and your teaching of writing that you hope to investigate through this program? Applications are due April 23. Please contact Jenny Desai at (617) 720-7603 with questions about admissions policy.
April Vacation 2013: In Greece as part of GreeceOnline grad course. This is a great opportunity and the experience of a lifetime! The trip is open to educators, K-12, all disciplines. Earn PDPs, CEUs, three grad credits. Information, costs, application
: or contact Connie Carven
Law Day in SchoolsThe Law Day in the Schools Program was started in 1986 to celebrate Law Day and to introduce information on the law and the legal profession to Boston students. Volunteers visit classrooms throughout the community to teach elementary, middle school and high school students and lead mock trials and interactive presentations on topics such as the First Amendment and the Constitution. The theme of this year's Program will be "No Courts, No Justice, No Freedom." Last year over 40 volunteers reached nearly 700 students in the BPS.
The Program is slated to begin May 1, 2 and 3. The volunteers aim to teach the lesson within a class period, but are flexible to the teacher's schedules. Our volunteers also provide all the written materials for the Program and the school does not need to provide anything to participate. Please note that the entire school is not required to sign up in order to participate. Our volunteers typically teach in history and civics courses, but welcome all fields of study. If schools are interested in participating in the Program, please fill out and return the attached form by April 13, 2012. For more information, see here.
BU Offers Course plus Stipend on climate science appropriate for K-8 teachersTuition is free for a 4-credit graduate course in the School of Education. (Tuition value is $2260.)
Applications are linked to the website: Any questions can be addressed here.
- There is a $700 stipend for teachers who complete the course.
- Each teacher will be offered $200 for equipment for their classroom.
- The course will meet at Boston University on May 17, May 24, June 7, June 14, and June 21 from 4:30 to 7:30, and from July 9 to July 20 (M-F) from 9 AM to 4 PM.
Pledge to Keep Mass Schools on the Right Track
Take the pledge, through the AFT, to keep Mass Schools on the right track and mail the completed forms in to the BTU office, c/o Angela Cristiani. See a copy of the pledge here.
Health and Welfare Walk-In Office Hours Extended
The Boston Teachers Union Health and Welfare Fund Office has temporarily extended its office hours on Wednesday evenings to 6:30 PM. The extended hours are for walk-in assistance at the Fund Office only; telephone hours have not been extended past 4:30 PM. This is a pilot study of the Fund Office hours which will extend until the end of the current school year.
Educator of the Year Application Deadline Extension
The deadline has been extended to Thursday, April 12. Each building administrator has applications.